The Health Ministry reported that Israel is being hit again by the Covid-19 epidemic. This has led to an increased number of people infected using the BA.5 variant. The government may be considering restoring the indoor mask mandate, according to some reports.
“We’re careful with terminology because we had something like this a month or so ago – there was an increase, and it went down very quickly. This time is actually different, and there is a new variant, the BA.5, which is more contagious,”Radio 103FM interviewed General Nachman Ash of the Ministry of Health on Sunday.
“I think that it’s possible to start calling this a new wave… I hope that, like during the Omicron wave, we can get through this without special restrictions.”
Kan in Israel quoted an Israeli source saying that Health Ministry officials would examine whether they will reinstate the mandate for indoor masks, which was removed at the end of April.
Since March ended, both the infection rate and hospitalizations are on the rise. According to the Health Ministry, there were 4,931 Covid cases reported Sunday. This is compared with 3,339 in the previous week and 1,752 two weeks ago.
According to Israeli media, there were 158 people in severe condition Sunday morning, as compared with 106 the week before.
Israel’s top Covid-19 response official, Salman Zarka, said this week that nearly 50% of people infected with the virus had the BA.5 variant. “The variant produces a relatively mild disease among young people, but we’re seeing a rise in hospitalization,”Zarka stated.
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